Frederick Edward Owens, Jr.

Date of Birth

June 25, 1946

Date of Death

January 3, 2023

Fred Owens, 76, resident of Santa Barbara for the last 12 years, passed away suddenly from a recently diagnosed brain tumor. His longtime companion and partner in love, Laurie Moon, was at his side. After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease four years ago, he spent his last years enjoying time with his family, walking with Laurie, writing and numerous trips to Seattle, Hawaii and even to Toronto for his 50 year college reunion at the University of Toronto, St. Michael’s College.

Born in Wilmette, Illinois, to Frederick Owens Sr. and Marie Owens (Cuny), Fred explored living in many places and had endless stories of hitchhiking and wandering from Mexico to Alaska in his younger days. He formed many lasting friendships from the flower fields of the Skagit Valley in the Pacific Northwest, landscaping around Boston, farm reporting in Texas, to living in Zimbabwe. When he met Laurie in Santa Barbara though, he knew he was home to stay.

His passion was writing and he displayed his talents in publishing several books, newsletters, blogs and newspapers under various mastheads such as Frog Hospital, Puget Sound Mail and Fred’s Almost Weekly. He had many loyal followers around the world who appreciated his wry observations on current events and daily life. He was an active supporter of the Mesa Harmony Garden and Kiwanis Club and enjoyed the camaraderie of his Parkinson’s exercise and support groups.

His children, Eugene of Los Angeles and Eva of Seattle, were his proudest achievements. He also leaves behind Eva’s wife Lara Rogers, grandsons Walter, Joseph and Paul, and his two sisters Carolyn Rios and Katie Owens and brother-in-law Bruce Walters of Denver. Fred had two former spouses, Susan Owens of Seattle, mother of his two children and Precious Sibanda formerly of Zimbabwe. He was predeceased by his sister Mary and brother Tom.

The owner of the Wilson County News in Floresville, Texas where Fred worked as a journalist 18 years ago remains his friend to this day. Elaine wrote these words in a column marking Fred’s passing
“Fred was kind and considerate, but firm in his beliefs— which differed from mine especially when it came to politics. We could completely disagree and still be friends. That is a good thing. The world would be a better place if there were more Freds. May you rest in peace, Fred Owens” A better way to be remembered would be hard to find. You are loved by many and we will forever miss you.

Our sincere thanks to Serenity House for their caring and empathy in Fred’s last days. As Fred would say, “See You Soon” and “Easy Does It”.

A memorial celebration will be held at the Mesa Harmony Garden in late April. RSVP to Laurie Moon at

Donations may be made in honor of Fred to Mesa Harmony Garden in Santa Barbara, a nonprofit that grows food for the Food Bank.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.